Lens striker Elye Wahi has admitted he turned down the chance to join Chelsea this summer.
20-year-old Wahi bagged 19 Ligue 1 goals for Montpellier last season and, understandably, attracted plenty of interest from across Europe.
Chelsea made a verbal offer of £21m for Wahi and planned to loan him to sister side Strasbourg, but a move failed to materialise, prompting interest from both Eintracht Frankfurt and West Ham United as well.
Ultimately, the striker ended up sticking in Ligue 1 with Lens, who parted with a cool £30m to get a deal done.
Speaking to L’Equipe, Wahi admitted a move to Chelsea was never particularly close as he was not impressed with the role offered to him.
“Chelsea, I didn’t want to go there just for the sake of it,” he confessed. “Frankfurt was hot. More than Chelsea.”
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Wahi was not the only young star to turn down a move to Chelsea, with Club Brugge winger Antonio Nusa also admitting he rejected the Blues’ advances late in the transfer window.
While Wahi is now off the market, Chelsea will continue to track Nusa over the coming months but face competition from the likes of Arsenal and Liverpool, who have both voiced an interest in the 18-year-old Norwegian.
Corinthians midfielder Gabriel Moscardo is also a target, with talks expected to continue over a potential move for the 17-year-old. The closure of the transfer window is not an issue in this deal as the teenager can only move to England after he turns 18, which he will do later this month.
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